Last Friday, we wrote about the word “independent.” Independent living means people with disabilities are ordinary people who have feelings, needs, and wants just like everyone else. We don’t need to be pitied (moral model), we don’t need to be fixed (medical model), we don’t need to be told what is best for us because someone else knows what’s best for us (professional model). This week’s Freedom Friday addresses the “moral model.”
The moral model is the false idea that people with disabilities are morally different from others. They are pre-judged as either especially good or bad because of having a disability. People with disabilities are not allowed to be regular people. Instead people with disabilities are labeled as either special angels, innocent and worthy of charity or as frightening, evil and worthy of ridicule. The moral model views disability as a punishment inflicted upon an individual or family by an external force. It can be due to misdemeanors committed by the disabled person, someone in the family or community group, or forbears.
Next Freedom Friday will address the “medical/professional” model.